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Paperback The Bee Tree Book

ISBN: 0590221086

ISBN13: 9780590221085

The Bee Tree

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Like New


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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. When Mary Ellen gets bored with her reading, Grandpa knows a hunt for a bee tree is just what she needs. Half the town joins the exciting chase, but it's not until everyone returns home that Mary...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

A Sweet and Savory Story by One of the Very Best

"The Bee Tree" is another of Patricia Polacco's superb explorations of intergenerational friendship, and the significance of culture and tradition. Her expressive, folksy, slightly loopy style are all her own, and she has long been one of my favorite illustrators. Here, the warm, homey pictures just draw you into the story, and suffuse it with the familiarity of a family heirloom. That's part of the magic here: Polacco's stories and colors are so vivid and personal that they seem like par t of your own history, when really she is merely honoring everyone's personal history in general. The colors are vibrant and soft at the same time, the narration has action and unique characterizations, and the obliquely offered message is even more powerful for it's brevity. Very definitely recommended, and I encourage you to discover more of her work!

The Bee Tree

Patricia Polacco, in her story The Bee Tree, tells a tale that emphasizes the important value of learning for its own sake. In this story, a young girl, Mary Ellen, tells her grandfather that she is tired of reading, that she would rather be outdoors running and playing. "In that case," responds her grandfather, " it must be time to find a bee tree."The grandfather goes outside with Mary Ellen, takes a sealed glass jar with him and leads his granddaughter to a garden full of bees pollinating flowers. The grandfather uses the jar to capture a number of buzzing creatures. He informs Mary Ellen that the insects will lead them to a hive full of the sweetest honey she will ever taste. As the grandfather lets the first bee escape, the chase begins.Some of the most intriguing characters join in on the chase when they see what the grandfather and the granddaughter are doing. They see some of the most interesting landmarks as they run after the bees that lead to the tree that holds the sweet reward. When they finally reach their destination, the grandfather knows just the right procedures that enable him to pull the honey safely out of the hive. After he acquires the honey, he invites everyone back to his house for a celebration.During the party, the grandfather takes Mary Ellen away from the crowd. He says quietly to her, "Now child, I am going to show you something what my father showed me, and his father before him."He spoons a dab of honey onto the cover of a book. "Taste," he says, almost in a whisper."There is such sweetness inside of that book, too. Such things ... adventure, knowledge, wisdom. But these things do not come easily. You have to pursue them. Just like we ran after the bees to find their tree, so you must also chase these things through the pages of a book."Then he smiles and hugs her. From that day on, Mary Ellen never again complained about her reading. She found it to be every bit as exciting as a wild chase through the countryside and as sweet as honey from a bee tree.Polacco stresses a number of positive images in her depiction of the grandfather. With a flowing beard and his head always covered with a yalmulke, he is a traditional Jewish figure who is a true source of wisdom and vitality. He is the kind of person whom children today unfortunately do not always experience, particularly when old people live in segregated neighborhoods and nursing homes and retirement complexes, and when parents and grandparents can live thousands of miles apart.This book is a true gift .

Polacco's usual superb work is evident here

Patricia Polacco is, to my mind, one of the finest children's book authors working today. Her mind is endlessly inventive and she manages to convey important truths and vital life lessons without ever once descending into preachiness or condescencion.Such is the case with "The Bee Tree." Polacco combines her usual rollicking, active illustrations with text that rambles and gamboles about all over the place. Mary Ellen is a little girl who's bored by reading and just wants to be outside running around. Her grandfather, through the course of a shaggy-dog-story-chase about hunting for honey, manages to convey to her the limitless things she can learn via books. The lesson is clear without being pedantic.

Pure honey

This story opens with Mary Ellen reading to her Grampa--and bored. "Feel like running, do you?" he asks, suggesting that they instead find a bee tree. The story transforms into "he went that-a-way." As in A Fly Went By, lots of people and animals chase an insect (well, in this case, several bees) through pages of glorious illustrations to find their quarry deep in Dunks Woods. They smoke the bees to calm them, retrieve honey combs and go home. Everyone gets tea, biscuits and honey.When the crowds leave, Grampa takes Mary Ellen inside and spoons some honey onto the cover of a book. "Taste," he whispers. "There is such sweetness inside that book too! Adventure, knowledge, wisdom. But these things do not come easily. You have to pursue them.... You must chase these things through the pages of a book!"Little under the sun is as sweet as a thing that teaches a child to love books. Alyssa A. Lappen

The Bee Tree is a metaphor on the importance of knowledge.

The Bee Tree is a great book to read to a child who is starting school or who may be having trouble with a particular subject. This story stresses the importance of gaining knowledge through reading, especially knowledge that doesn't come easily. Curl up with your child and a snack including honey to add a little oomph! to the message. Enjoy!
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